Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Xinhua: Hunan Province Reports 1st H7N9 Case Of The Season

# 10,938

Hunan Province, which ranks 7th in the number of announced H7N9 cases (n=26) since 2013, reports their first H7N9 positive patient for the winter of 2015-16.

Source: Xinhua   2016-01-27 19:51:56

CHANGSHA, Jan. 27 (Xinhua) -- A new human H7N9 avian flu case was confirmed in central China's Hunan Province, with several coastal provinces reporting such cases this winter.

The patient is a 33-year-old man from Xintian County who is receiving treatment in a hospital, said the Hunan Provincial Health and Family Planning Commission on Wednesday.

Sporadic human H7N9 cases have been reported in Shanghai, Zhejiang, Guangdong and Fujian, including two fatalities, one in Zhejiang and another in Guangdong.

Three human H5N6 cases were also reported in Guangdong and one in Jiangxi. The H5N6 patient in Jiangxi, a 42-year-old male who lived in Guangdong, died in a hospital in Jiangxi in December. One H5N6 patient died in Guangdong in the same month. 
We've yet to see the kind of January surge in H7N9 cases that we've witnessed over the past couple of years in China.  Whether this reflects some change in the behavior or spread of the virus, or a change in surveillance and reporting, is unknown.

As I noted in yesterday's WHO: Influenza at the Human-Animal Interface - January 2016, since February of last year we've seen significantly reduced (or delayed) reporting on avian flu out of China, with many provinces preferring to release information in batches, often weeks after the fact.

While the reduction in reported infections may be a good sign, it may be several months before we see China's full accounting of avian flu cases.

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